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Growing up Organic / Grandir bio


Growing Up Organic (GUO) is a garden and farm-based education program for children and youth delivered by the Canadian Organic Growers (Ottawa-St. Lawrence-Outaouais chapter) in the City of Ottawa.

GUO partners with schools to support the establishment of school garden programs as the basis for experiential education at all grade levels. We provide educators with the essential tools to start these initiatives with confidence and ongoing support. Our garden-based workshops delivered on-site at school gardens and made available online, provide teachers with building blocks and a model for integrating hands-on food literacy into their pedagogy.


GUO is focused on empowerment: through our strategic focus on education, we are fostering a generation of children and youth with greater food literacy, life-long healthy eating habits, increased food skills and an understanding of environmental health issues. GUO is celebrating 10 years of food-literacy in the Ottawa community. In this time we’ve established over 40 school gardens across the region, taught thousands of garden workshops and engaged many happy students in the soil that surrounds them.

Believe it or not, spring is right around the corner and Growing Up Organic is ready! We are excited to be offering another round of our spring workshops. As the sunshine returns we are getting ready to join teachers and parents in your school gardens and start some seeds together.  The garden is an exciting place in the spring - plants are sprouting, the soil is warm and all kinds of creatures start to wake up – including us!

In the spring we offer four curriculum-linked workshops to share with Ottawa students.

This year's workshops include:

  • Planning the Garden – students learn about companion planting and what plants need to grow in a garden and make garden plans that will shape their garden for the season
  • Seed Starting – students study and germinate seeds to grow in their garden
  • Salad Gardens – in this fun workshops students get to direct-seed their gardens as they learn about biodiversity and eating their greens!
  • Transplants – not all plants have time to grow right from the garden bed; students learn more about plant growth and structure as they bring their plants from the seed starting workshop outside into the garden.

Our garden-based workshops are an excellent way to teach curriculum while the students reconnect to their garden after this long winter. With thanks to our partnership with the OCDSB and support from our other  grant providers like the Plant-a-Seed and See What Grows Foundation, we are able to continue offering our workshops at no cost to OCDSB teachers.  Through our school workshops, we provide ongoing support in and out of the garden to teachers and parents in Ottawa as we work to establish a  broader understanding of food literacy in schools and at home.  


Due to funding restrictions we are only able to offer our workshops to OCDSB students this year. Look for us this summer as we partner with the Ottawa Public Library youth summer programming. Come attend a garden-based education workshop this August, 2017 with Growing Up Organic while connecting with your local Ottawa Public Library branch.